JUST when you think everything is going so well, along comes the rain and wipes out the entire tomato crop.

August was a bit of a washout and it caused all my tomatoes to succumb to blight. Almost overnight they turned from promisingly plump green spheres to brown mushy blobs.

Blight is the perennial enemy of potatoes and tomatoes and the last two years have been particularly bad because of the wet summers. But at least everyone else I have spoken to seems to have had the same thing happen so I can relax in the knowledge that it isn’t just neglect that ruined the crop. Keeping on top of harvesting the crops from the allotment over the summer proved to be a bit of a challenge with summer holidays, weddings and other activities getting in the way.

Runner beans turn tough and stringy within hours, it seems, if you leave them unpicked for too long. But they have been a really rewarding crop to grow and don’t need too much attention.

Despite the blight in the tomatoes, my potatoes have escaped relatively unharmed with only a few odd ones munched by the slugs or with the beginnings of blight.

The Charlotte variety did incredibly well and although a salad variety, they ended up the size of baking potatoes. King Edwards also did well, but they were a bit on the small side.

In the brassica bed, the white cabbages have all done pretty well despite the determined efforts of caterpillars to eat the whole crop. I lost one red cabbage and the other two were pretty small but were still delicious. The Swiss chard is still the star performer of the whole allotment with all three varieties -– ruby, yellow and white – still going strong and it seems like the more you pick the more it grows.

The apple trees are now ripe and to say I have a glut of cooking apples is a bit of an understatement. The three cooking apple trees have all produced masses of very large apples whereas the three eating apple trees haven’t done quite so well. The gourds, which look like small pumpkins, and butternut squash are both doing well and should be ready to harvest in a month or so.

As autumn approaches I am gradually harvesting the last of the crops and digging over the ground so it has time to break down into nice crumbly soil ready for next year’s seedlings.